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Festival Preview: Boscov’s Berks Jazz Fest

Jazz festival in Reading, Pa area features both mainstream and smooth jazz artists

Joe Sample and the Jazz Crusaders
George Duke
George Duke (photo: Bobby Holland)

For the next few weeks, we’ll be previewing upcoming festivals happening this spring and summer. First up is the Boscov’s Berks Jazz Fest, a hidden gem located about an hour from Philadelphia and a few hours from New York City.

The Reading, Pa. area is known for its shopping thanks to a bevy of outlet stores. But for the last 20 years, the area has also played host to a jazz festival that blends both mainstream and smooth jazz styles, with an occasional dollop of blues and R&B. The 21st annual Boscov’s Berks Jazz Fest will be held March 25 through April 3 and includes more than 130 events at various venues, clubs and restaurants throughout Berks County. The festival is presented by the Berks Arts Council and is sponsored by Boscov’s Department Store. John Ernesto is the longtime artistic director of the festival and has always balanced the programming with both smooth jazz and mainstream jazz.

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